Crisis Management: Lessons to be learnt from Qatari diplomacy
June 05 2018 12:33 AM
Faisal Abdulhameed al-Mudahka
Faisal Abdulhameed al-Mudahka

Faisal Abdulhameed al-Mudahka/Editor-in-Chief

One year has passed, and the Gulf crisis is still dragging on. On June 5, 2017 Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain and Egypt announced a siege on Qatar. But the international community has by now become fully aware how flagrant the quartet has been towards Qatar. The same international community is also witnessing how Doha is slowly but surely harvesting the success of its diplomatic equanimity, prudence and wisdom. Proudly said, proficient Qatari diplomacy has managed to deter and overcome the bloc’s foul plan to literally destroy the country.

As all of us already know, the scenario was all played out in advance. The blockaders’ plan was first to debase the image of Qatar, to isolate it by imposing a full siege, to destroy its currency and eventually its economy, and finally, as reported in many intelligence reports, to invade Qatar, all the while ignoring the cultural cohesion, kinship, GCC history, and even worse, regional stability.

However, since the beginning of the crisis, Qatari diplomacy acted with composure and strength. Absorbing the siege’s initial shock, Qatar managed to professionally take control of the overall situation, expediting the official opening of Hamad Port and launching new maritime routes, expanding the national carrier's aviation fleet and adding new destinations, and widening the scope of its friendly international relations.

It has truly been a tough year full of anti-Qatar campaigning that included defamation, incitement, lobbying and bribery. Billions of dollars were wasted on public relations campaigns and arms deals. This money should have gone for social productivity through investments in technology, education, infrastructure, construction and economic development. Yes, but that is how it was conducted.

I still really wonder what exactly were the blockaders thinking of when they imposed the blatant blockade on my country? I mean, what was their state of mind when they first ordered the siege of tiny Qatar.

What is even worse, why would the quartet keep injecting the young generation with the poison of hatred and resentment towards their families. Is it part of Big Brother’s totalitarian tactics to buy some time in maintaining the status quo?

From my humble viewpoint, the quartet’s complacency against Qatar was a direct strategic mistake. It was the outcome of some miscalculations of a backward, medieval , and imperial way of thinking.

Personally, I feel sorry for some of the siege nations' accomplices. I would just call them ‘the deluded’ who think that regional and international relations are managed like some video game or WhatsApp groups. May Allah guide them; this is my only prayer for them.

It is true that the crisis has taken a political, economic, and cultural toll on all of us. However, it also resulted in the moral decay of the blockaders. I am talking of the blockaders’ moral rot not because I am Qatari or defending Qatar. It is a widespread thought adopted by a good number of people living in the blockading countries. It is accepted by Saudis, Emiratis, Bahrainis, and even Egyptians. Why else do you think Saudi Arabia, the UAE, and Bahrain imprisoned and fined hundreds of their citizens for only sympathising with their second home, Qatar?

Surprisingly too, the blockaders’ politicians, the very ones who orchestrated the siege, are also fully aware of their moral decadence. Otherwise, why would they make contradictory public statements and why would they, especially the Saudis, insist on degrading and downplaying the decisive importance of the Gulf crisis, while their media networks and platforms are working 24/7 on discrediting Qatar?

Speaking of the blockaders’ vain attempt to discredit Qatar, social media sites, Twitter for example, have become nests to what is usually referred to as electronic mosquitoes (or bots). These mosquitoes are given the only task of constantly playing on people’s minds, or brainwashing them, by continuously spreading lies, slanders, defamation, libel, and rumours about Qatar.

The process is systematically organised in Saudi Arabia and the UAE by spyware and hacking bullies. Mere puppets are keeping those social media campaigns simmering in siege countries.

Finally, a lot of us wish and pray to Allah for an imminent solution to the crisis. Our trust in the Kuwaiti mediation has always been strong. Qatar welcomes any solution that would end the crisis, provided that its sovereignty is never compromised. State sovereignty is a red line that should never be crossed. Otherwise, let the siege be there forever.

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Last updated: June 05 2018 01:04 AM

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